RICHMOND, VA. — Dr. Isabel Wood Rogers, 82, Professor Emerita of Applied Christianity at Union Theological Seminary and Presbyterian School of Christian Education, died March 18 in Richmond.
Services are scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday, March 24, at Ginter Park Church in Richmond with a reception to follow. Interment will be in her birthplace of Tallahassee, Fla. Survivors include a sister, Elizabeth Green McCord of Tallahassee, and two nephews.
Born in 1924, she held degrees from Florida State University (A.B.), the University of Virginia (M.A.), the Presbyterian School of Christian Education (M.R.E.), and Duke University (Ph.D.). Austin College, Westminster College, and Centre College all awarded her honorary degrees.
Dr. Rogers, known affectionately as “Dr. Izzie,” taught at the Presbyterian School of Christian Education from 1961-1998. Upon her retirement, she was named Professor Emerita of Applied Christianity. Prior to her work at PSCE, she was the Presbyterian campus minister and chaplain and the director of campus religious activities at Georgia College in Milledgeville.
She was the author of five study books for Presbyterians: The Christian and World Affairs, In Response to God, Our Shared Earth, In a Word, and Sing a New Song.
Dr. Rogers was elected moderator of the 199th General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Her election came just four years after the national “reunion” that ended more than a century of separation in the denomination.
“My task has always been to get people to think for themselves,” she said in a 2000 interview published in the seminary magazine. “The role of the moderator is to encourage people to raise questions, to think for themselves, to forge their own faith. I can’t help being a teacher, and I really think our task is to try to lead people into that kind of openness and ability to talk together in diversity.”
Union-PSCE is planning a service of thanksgiving and remembrance of Dr. Rogers on May 3, during the annual Sprunt Lectures, to be held May 2-4.